Friday, February 26, 2010

Ringing The Changes and Staying The Same

Although my beloved has had the whole week off work, the primary benefit has been quite simply enjoying each other's company for rather longer periods than her usual work routine permits. Watching the occasional light-hearted DVD, whilst still abed in the morning, has helped make ma belle's time-off seem more like a holiday. For all we'd love to change the world, in terms of social justice and the far too prevalent inequalities, and have both been activists in the political arena, our own needs are quite simple and we thoroughly enjoy the privilege of being able to spend time together in our home and garden.

My stamina level isn't particularly brilliant at the moment and, an increased tenderness of glands beneath the chin and in the armpits, alongside aching spasmodically painful limbs, has done little to alleviate this far too familiar situation. Our only two expeditions of the week have been a visit to the garden centre at Otley and, yesterday, a visit to the local tax office to sort out my anomalous tax situation, paying tax on a small pension even though my total income is more than two grand below my personal allowance (the allowance having increased when I attained full senior citizen status last June).

The taxation problem seems to have arisen as the companies paying two minute pensions are allocated to different regional tax offices. Evidently the code duly allocated to one of the pension providers had never been issued! Hopefully, after the valiant efforts of the tax office staff in Harrogate, this problem has now been resolved! Late morning, we made a preliminary visit to the office and were able to arrange an appointment for the same afternoon. This allowed time for us to go back home, where I quickly concocted a spicy chicken risotto for our lunch before the appointed hour. It feels like quite an achievement to have made and kept this appointment as, ever since succumbing to M.E. back in 2003, pre-arranged appointments in town have contributed to panic attacks on top of other excruciating ailments. I even managed to enjoy a grocery shop at Waitrose before returning home!

The day's activities caught up with me later in the evening, as lower limbs painfully refused to be fully co-operative; a vice like griping pain, seemingly emanating from thigh and shin bones rather than the muscle, made traversing the room seem more akin to attempting to skip the light-fantastic at the 72nd hour of a dance marathon. Having emerged from my duvet cocoon at around 11.00am, by 10.00pm my head was exhaustedly floating, leadenly anchored, in a mercury bath. My beloved concernedly assisted my passage to the bedroom where I swiftly collapsed into sleep mode.

A relatively comfortable emergence, into this new day, has been assisted, in no small part, by the efficacious administration of tramadol hydrochloride to alleviate the griping spasms in limbs and torso. By the time I'd managed to remove myself from bed, and attained a degree of verticality, my beloved had already headed off to her volunteer duties at the Acorn Centre.

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